Bundaberg’s Les Kiss has been appointed the new Queensland Reds head coach.
The 58-year-old has a long list of coaching achievements at a provincial, state and national level with multiple pieces of silverware and success from around the world with teams such as Ireland, Ulster, the Springboks and New South Wales Waratahs.
His most recent achievement was as head coach at London Irish Rugby Club in the UK where he oversaw their promotion from the English Championship to the top-flight English Premiership.
“Queensland Rugby has a proud history of 140 years and I am honoured to soon be a part of that as I begin this next chapter of my coaching career at the Reds,” said Kiss.
“It was an attractive option. The opportunity to return home to Queensland and coach at a successful club in a new world-class facility at Ballymore was something which appealed to me greatly.
“The Reds have an exciting roster which I am really looking forward to working with. There’s a pathway to the Wallabies with high-quality players boasting skill, ambition and endeavour.
“With anything in life, you need meaning and purpose. That’s already clear to see here. Brad Thorn laid a culture of fight, spirit and hard-work, plus a love for the jersey – as Queenslanders we get that.
“I am committed to building on these strong foundations to help the Reds achieve their full potential in Super Rugby.”
Queensland Rugby Union CEO David Hanham welcomed Kiss to the Reds setup.
“Les comes to Ballymore with more than 20 years of professional coaching experience – including eight as a head coach across multiple club environments in the UK and Europe,” said Hanham.
“He has had success at all levels including Six Nations titles with Ireland, Super Rugby and Pro14 finals with the Waratahs and Ulster plus English Premiership promotion at London Irish.
“Throughout an extensive three-stage selection process, Les was a standout candidate in front of an independent panel and provided us with clarity and confidence in his ability to be successful as head coach.
“As a Queenslander and having previously coached in Australia, combined with his wealth of experience and success, Les is an excellent fit for the Reds and we believe he has the right formula to take Queensland to the next level in Super Rugby.”